Irish Walled Towns

Irish Walled Towns Content

The Viking raiders of the ninth century and the Anglo-Norman invaders of the twelfth built defensive strongholds that over the centuries came to enrich the fabric of Irish life.

Projects We've Funded

Rinn Dúin, Co. Roscommon - Town Walls Conservation

Largely unknown, Rinn Dúin in Co. Roscommon is an abandoned medieval town located on a peninsula jutting out into Lough Ree. The surviving remains constitute one of the most important complexes of Medieval monuments in the country. Working in partnership with St. John's Parish Heritage Group and Roscommon County Council the €315,000 provided by the IWTN has ensured the survival of all three mural towers and the sole gate into the town. Other schemes supported by the Heritage Council include the conservation of the medieval hospital, church, mill, and the erection of interpretation panels. Since undergoing these works, visitor numbers have gone from almost zero in 2010 to 6,500 in 2011.

There is little physical evidence to indicate settlement before the coming of the Normans but the place-name Rinn Dúin, 'the fort of the promontory', is itself an indication of pre-Norman settlement. Rinn Dúin was the findspot of the bronze crucifixion plaque commonly known as the 'Athlone plaque', one of the best known pieces of Early Christian Irish metalwork. The Norman settlement was established in Rinn Dúin in the C13th when the town wall, one of the best examples in the country, parish church and castle were constructed.

View Draft Rinn Dúin Interpretation Plan (2012) [pdf 2.5mb].

View Rinn Dúin Conservation & Management Plan (2012) [pdf 35mb].

View Rinn Dúin Management Plan (1998) [pdf 1.33mb].

Please roll over images to display controls (photos Mary Teehan, Archaeologist & Liam Mannix, IWTN).

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IWTN wishes to acknowledge the support given by the European Regional Development Fund; Ireland's EU Structural Funds Programmes 2007-2013; and the Department of Environment, Heritage & Local Government in completing the 2009 conservation works on the town walls of Rindoon, Co. Roscommon.